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Former Barcelona Star Samuel Eto'o: Black Coaches 'Seen as 2nd-Class Citizens'

Gianni Verschueren@ReverschPassFeatured ColumnistJanuary 7, 2019

Former African Footballer of the Year and Cameroonian striker Samuel Eto'oFils speak during the press conference after the CAF awards at the Accra International Press Conference in Accra, on January 4, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / CRISTINA ALDEHUELA        (Photo credit should read CRISTINA ALDEHUELA/AFP/Getty Images)
CRISTINA ALDEHUELA/Getty Images

Former Barcelona, Inter Milan and Chelsea star Samuel Eto'o has said black coaches are seen as "second-class citizens" around the sport and don't get the trust they deserve.

The Cameroonian striker, who is still active at the age of 37, gave an interview to Canal+ (h/t Marca) and talked about his future.

He said he may go into coaching but that there are factors working against him and fellow black managers: "Many black former players don't get the coaching license, but there are also many who do have this. There is a lack of trust. That trust doesn't exist, and we are seen as second-class citizens."

Cameroonian forward Samuel Eto'o attends his presentation after signing a one year contract to play for Qatar Sports Club football team, in Doha on August 14, 2018. - Veteran Cameroon star Samuel Eto'o has signed for Qatar league side, Qatar Sports Club,
KARIM JAAFAR/Getty Images

Racism in football has been a constant topic during the 2018-19 campaign following high-profile cases involving Kalidou Koulibaly, Raheem Sterling and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

But while the focus has mostly been on issues involving fans, the lack of black coaches has long been a problem as well.

Per the Independent's Jonathan Liew, a number of statistics point to the fact that black managers do not get the same opportunities as white coaches in English football.

Sportswriter Sulaiman Folarin shared more comments Eto'o made during the interview, on the need for players to walk out when faced with racist chants:

Sulaiman Folarin @sulaiman4real

Samuel Eto'o @setoo9 had a legitimate point here. Recent racist acts and chants in #England & #Italy has to hit club's pockets; reading materials before matches to stop racism doesn't cut it. https://t.co/e9Jvtl9eu9

Napoli manager Carlo Ancelotti discussed taking his players off the pitch following the Koulibaly development:

James Horncastle @JamesHorncastle

Ancelotti says Napoli asked for the game to be suspended on 3 occasions for racist chanting aimed at Koulibaly. Speaker read out 3 warnings. Ancelotti bewildered why game wasn’t interrupted. Adds next time Napoli will stop playing even if it means they forfeit the game

As Sid Lowe of the Telegraph reported, Eto'o suffered racist abuse during his time with Barcelona, threatening to leave the pitch during a win over Real Zaragoza in 2006.

He played for the Catalans between 2004 and 2009, winning three La Liga titles and two UEFA Champions League trophies. He then moved to Inter in a swap deal involving Zlatan Ibrahimovic and cash, playing a key role in the team's treble-winning 2009-10 campaign.

He later had stints with Chelsea, Everton and Sampdoria before moving to Turkey and Qatar. He currently plays for Qatar SC, a club in the Stars League.

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